Stranger Things star Charlie Heaton was turned away at LAX airport while attempting to attend the season 2 premiere, due to cocaine possession. After months of anticipation, Friday saw Stranger Things season 2 make its long awaited debut on Netflix, and the cast and crew gathered in Los Angeles on Thursday night for a big launch party. Sadly, Heaton found himself unable to attend.
As with many British actors, Heaton's American accent is basically flawless, so it's quite likely that many Stranger Things fans aren't even aware that he's not an American in real life. The 23-year-old Heaton actually got his start on British TV a few years back, before hitting it big playing Jonathan Byers on Stranger Things. Heaton is also set to play a leading role in the upcoming X-Men-based film The New Mutants, directed by Josh Boone.
According to UK outlet The Sun, Heaton flew from his London home to LAX airport last Saturday afternoon, but was caught by drug sniffing dogs. Border officials reportedly found traces of a white powder on his belongings, which was later confirmed to be cocaine. According to The Sun's source, Heaton was not arrested, and was instead held at the airport for awhile, then sent back to London by plane. Heaton was likely not charged with a crime due to how small the amount of cocaine was.
The Thursday night season 2 premiere party went on as scheduled, with no mention of why Heaton was not in attendance. A representative for the actor has declined comment. Netlix reps also have yet to comment on the matter, and US border officials don't publicly discuss individual cases. It's unclear at this time whether what happened will cause Heaton to be refused entry to the US in the future.
While Heaton wasn't charged with a crime, one wonders if this incident will have any effect on his future with Stranger Things. Whatever ones opinion on drug legalization, cocaine remains very much illegal in the US, and it was definitely unwise of Heaton to fly over with the substance in his possession. Should Heaton end up being unable to come to the US going forward, that could conceivably cause major problems for Stranger Things, which films in Atlanta. If Heaton can't get to the set, it seems unlikely that he could continue on the show.
Stranger Things season 2 is available to stream right now on Netflix.
Source: The Sun